Haywood County, NC is a great place to experience traditional mountain living with all the conveniences of modern life. Small, tight-knit communities dot the area. Roads lead to the county seat of Waynesville or point toward the nearby regional hub, Asheville.
For experiences off road, locals and visitors alike enjoy the natural beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Pisgah National Forest. Adventures await along mountain biking trails and whitewater rafting rivers. The highest elevations along the Blue Ridge Parkway can be reached in Haywood County, as well.
Waynesville is the largest city in Haywood County. But surrounding neighborhoods and towns in Haywood County offer small-town charm and mountain amenities. Learn about each of these communities and plan your next trip to Haywood County today!
High mountain peaks surround the town of Waynesville and its quaint, historic Main Street. Downtown Waynesville is a pedestrian’s dream, with much from which to choose. Fine shops, art studios and galleries, cafés, fine restaurants, and breweries line Main Street’s tree-lined brick sidewalks. The town was once billed as the Gateway to the Smokies and is now the seat of Haywood County.
On the west side of Waynesville is Hazelwood Village, which has merged with the town but maintained its own identity and evolved into a revitalized retail district. Hazelwood is home to the Folkmoot Friendship Center, which serves as the headquarters for the two-week international dance and music festival held every July. Waynesville is also home to the Museum of North Carolina Handicrafts, which is located in the historic Shelton House.
After decades as a quiet mill town, Canton is enjoying an economic resurgence thanks to new businesses and changing demographics. The town’s charming downtown district is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, but offers a fresh face to small-town living. Visitors are drawn to the historic downtown and recent business development, while new residents are attracted to the area’s affordability and quality of life.
The oldest structure in Haywood County sits in Clyde, a hamlet that lies between Canton and Waynesville. The Shook-Smathers House, home to the Shook Museum, was built around 1820, with decades of additions producing the structure we see today. The home’s attic chapel hosted many storied circuit preachers over the years. A number of them left their mark in the unique collection of signatures that decorate the chapel’s walls.
Maggie Valley is just 10 miles outside of Waynesville. This quaint mountain delight sprang up to cater to visitors and still rolls out the welcome mat to travelers today. The town is an epicenter of old-time mountain fun. You can find everything from family restaurants and fine dining to foot-stomping Appalachian song and dance and some of the best snow skiing in the South. Nearby Cataloochee Valley is home to a growing elk population.
Learn More about Haywood County
Haywood County offers myriad ways to Live the Life You Choose. From luxury estates to mountaintop cabins to homes within walking distance of revitalizing downtowns, homes in the county are appreciating quickly. Find the best home to match your chosen lifestyle.